FROM JOHN’O GROATS TO PARIS
Monique Sliedrecht’s paintings, inspired by the fishing vessels and seascapes of the Far North, have drifted from Freswick to Paris, via Rotterdam. Her exhibition last autumn in Holland, ‘Floodtide’, has become a springtime exhibition called ‘Ebbtide’ at the gallery of Pave d’Orsay in the city centre of Paris.
‘It’s wonderful to be in the beautiful city of Paris and exhibiting here for the first time is something of a dream,’ says Monique, who lived and worked at Freswick Castle for many years and still spends periods of time painting in the Far North. ‘Caithness is really home to me, in so many ways, but I love connections to inspiring cities, including Edinburgh where I have my current studio and now, through this exhibition, to the amazing world of Paris. It’s also great to have an exhibition which focuses solely on my paintings and the gallery have presented my work very well. I had installation work at Rotterdam, with large numbers of broken buoy pieces from Freswick beach, but I am now enjoying the simplicity and clarity of this new exhibition, which also has some more recent paintings.’
Having lived and worked in the far north of Scotland at Freswick Castle, the sea has played a large part in Monique Sliedrecht’s painting.
There are quotes from poets and writers, all in French, on the walls, alongside the paintings and the introductory description puts it well:
‘Ebbtide is the period between high tide and low tide during which water flows away from the shore and vanishes into the restless sea. It’s all about endless change and the unseen world beyond the margins of sea and sky, a sense of something much greater than ourselves, fearful and yet thrilling.’
‘Ebbtide has been running throughout May and finishes this Saturday on 23rd May when some of the paintings will be moving on to Ghent, Belgium for an exhibition in June.